Usain Bolt is the fastest man in the world when it comes to sprinting. The gun fires and Bolt is off and in less than 10 seconds Usain has crossed the finish line. Unlike the mad dash speed of a sprinter, reaching you financial goals is more like running in a marathon where pacing yourself and perseverance are keys to completing the race.
Marathon runners have to think about the race they are running. Rather than focusing solely on the finish line, they focus on intermediate targets. A marathon runner will have a time goal for different milestone during the race, they know they must be mentally prepared for the boredom and pain of a long distance run. Marathoners know things will go wrong once they start the race and have a backup plan for dealing with those problems. They know they will “hit a wall” and want to give up, but they prepare for that moment and learn to break through.
All of this is more closely related to achieving lasting financial success. You should have intermediate financial goals as well as long term goals. Perhaps, you can establish a date to pay off your mortgage or credit cards, or a monthly savings goal. You should know that things will go wrong along the way and have a plan B for dealing with setbacks. You should be aware that you will “hit a wall” and be mentally prepared to work your way through, over, or around the wall. You should know all of this will be hard, but with discipline and perseverance you can successfully complete the course.